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Last Updated: Sunday, 2 April 2006, 18:14 GMT 19:14 UK
Cambridge blame water for defeat
By Martin Gough
BBC Sport at the Boat Race

Cambridge lost the Boat Race by five lengths to Oxford
Cambridge lost the Boat Race by five lengths to Oxford
Cambridge believe the massive amount of water they took on during the 152nd Boat Race was a major factor in their five-length defeat to Oxford.

Light Blues coach Duncan Holland said the extra weight of water in the boat was up to 100kg, like an extra man.

The design of their boat meant they had no pump in place to bail out water, while Oxford had four.

"I don't want to rain on Oxford's victory but it's pretty hard to row with a boat full of water," he said.

Oxford opened a lead when the water became rough and Cambridge cox Peter Rudge admitted: "Maybe we should have had pumps or something, I don't know

"You just can't row in that sort of stuff. We were out in the middle of it. Oxford were a little bit sheltered and it made a big difference.

All along we were the better crew. The bookies just got it wrong
Oxford cox Seb Pearce

"But when they got their opportunity they really, really took it well. There wasn't a lot we could do in that sort of water."

However, Oxford cox Seb Pearce said: "We pumped a little bit [of water] out but hardly any."

He played down the advantage winning the toss, which saw them rowing on the inside of the big bend in the middle of the race and gaining extra shelter.

Cambridge, odds-on favourites to lift the trophy, were left trailing when Pearce called for a push after Hammersmith Bridge.

"It was awesome. I didn't expect it work out that way but it was great," Pearce told BBC Sport.

We've no regrets in our preparation. There was no more we could have done
Cambridge president Tom Edwards

"I think we were the better crew. All along we were the better crew. The bookies just got it wrong.

"People get sucked in by a smooth style and it's about making the boat go fast. When we were side by side we went quicker."

Pearce paid tribute to coach Sean Bowden, who helped a crew containing just one previous Boat Race competitor - Barney Williams - to victory.

"We had more than enough experience with Sean. He's got such a good track record - in the last five years the only races we've lost have been controversial," he said.

Cambridge president Tom Edwards admitted: "They handled the conditions better than us and that was it; it's tough to come back from there.

"I'm really proud of the boys. The way they handled themselves this year, I couldn't have asked for more.

"We've no regrets in our preparation. There was no more we could have done."



SEE ALSO
Joining forces
02 Apr 06 |  Rowing
Boat Race photos
02 Apr 06 |  Photo Galleries


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